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Logano on pole for season finale

Once he leaves JGR, Logano will be heading to his new race seat at Penske Racing in the #22 driven over the past 12 months by Kurt Busch, AJ Allmendinger and Sam Hornish Jr. - and it looks like he'll be team mate to the reigning Cup champion, assuming things go to plan this weekend for Brad Keselowski, who leads Jimmie Johnson by 20pts coming into this weekend's title decider.

It's started well for Keselowski, who qualified in third place on Friday comfortably ahead of Jimmie Johnson, who could only manage tenth place on the starting grid.

"I totally expected him to out-qualify us, to be quite honest," said Keselowski, explaining that this had been the case in qualifying at similar recent mile and a half tracks including Chicagoland and Texas Motor Speedway. "I was going to be fine with that. At least we were prepared for the worst and that's not what happened, so I guess we're okay."

“Obviously, this is what you want to do .. you want to qualify well," he added, although he admitted: ""Other than pit stall selection, it's kind of a moot point, in a sense."

Johnson had been busy playing mind games on Keselowski in the build up to this weekend's race, and he admitted that he wished he could have started a little further up the grid to keep applying the pressure to the #2.

"I'd love to have him right there by me when we start the race and put the pressure on him," he said after qualifying. "The best pressure I could put on him would be winning the pole, but we didn't do that.

"I'll find a way to make it good for me if I can," he continued. "We'll get a good pit stall on pit road and go into race trim [Saturday] and make sure we've got our race car right."

As well as Logano, Ambrose and Keselowski, the top ten for the start of Sunday's race will also feature Carl Edwards, Aric Almirola, Michael Waltrip Racing team mates Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex Jr., Kyle Busch and Mark Martin ahead of Johnson.

“I'm pretty pleased to be up front tonight," said second-place man Ambrose. "We haven't been great the last 10 weeks in qualifying, so it feels good to be up here.

"But I've got all the respect in the world for Brad Keselowski and all he does and what he stands for," the Australian added. "If I can be a friend to him on Sunday – I know I might have stolen the spotlight off of him in qualifying – but I'll be his friend out there on Sunday."




Related Pictures

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Marcos Ambrose, right, talks things over with Joey Logano on pit lane before qualifying at Sonoma on Friday, June 22, 2012. (Photo Credit: By Robert Laberge, Getty Images for NASCAR)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Office Toyota, stands in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway on September 28, 2012 in Dover, Delaware. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski driver of the #2 Miller Lite Dodge and Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s/Kobalt Tools Chevrolet speak with members of the media during the NASCAR Championship Contenders Press Conference at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 15, 2012 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Joey Logano, driver of the #20 The Home Depot Toyota, talks with members of the media at Richmond International Raceway on September 6, 2012 in Richmond, Virginia. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images for NASCAR) (Photo Credit: Patrick McDermott/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Joey Logano, driver of the #20 Home Depot/redbeacon.com Toyota, poses after qualifying for the pole position in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2012 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Ty Dillon, driver of the #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, poses with the Coors Light Pole Award after qualifying first for the NASCAR Nationwide Series VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway on September 19, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., driver of the #88 Diet Mountain Dew Chevrolet SS qualified for eleventh position September 19, 2014 for Sunday`s Chase Challenger 16 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, New Hampshire. Earnhardt, Jr. is in the Chase which continues with the Challenger 16 for this and next week`s race. (Photo by Alan Marler/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s Chevrolet SS qualified for sixth position September 19, 2014 for Sunday`s Chase Challenger 16 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, New Hampshire. Johnson is in the Chase which continues with the Challenger 16 for this and next week`s race. (Photo by Christa L Thomas/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Designate A Driver Chevrolet SS qualified for third position September 19, 2014 for Sunday`s Chase Challenger 16 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, New Hampshire. Harvick is in the Chase which continues with the Challenger 16 for this and next week`s race. (Photo by Christa L Thomas/HHP for Chevy Racing)
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Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, celebrates setting the pole position during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on September 19, 2014 in Loudon, New Hampshire. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Toyota, smiles at Clint Bowyer, driver of the #15 5-hour Energy Toyota, during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on September 19, 2014 in Loudon, New Hampshire.  (Photo Credit: Jared Wickerham/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on September 19, 2014 in Loudon, New Hampshire. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Designate a Driver Chevrolet, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on September 19, 2014 in Loudon, New Hampshire. (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Marcos Ambrose in the Richard Petty Motorsport garage at Sonoma Raceway on June 20, 2014 (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, leads the field after a restart during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series MyAFibStory.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway on September 14, 2014 in Joliet, Illinois. (Photo Credit: Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series MyAFibStory.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway on September 14, 2014 in Joliet, Illinois. (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, places his name in the top twelve on The Chase Grid after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series MyAFibStory.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway on September 14, 2014 in Joliet, Illinois. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

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